30 Aug 2022 5:54 AM GMT
The Supreme Court on Tuesday closed the contempt case initiated against Advocate Prashant Bhushan in 2009 over his interview given to Tehelka magazine in which he said that several previous Chief Justices of India are corrupt. The case against Tehelka editor Tarun Tejpal was also closed.A bench comprising Justices Indira Banerjee, Surya Kant and MM Sundresh closed the contempt proceedings in...
The Supreme Court on Tuesday closed the contempt case initiated against Advocate Prashant Bhushan in 2009 over his interview given to Tehelka magazine in which he said that several previous Chief Justices of India are corrupt. The case against Tehelka editor Tarun Tejpal was also closed.
A bench comprising Justices Indira Banerjee, Surya Kant and MM Sundresh closed the contempt proceedings in view of the explanation given by Bhuhsan and apology expressed by Tejpal.
Senior Advocate Kamini Jaiswal appearing for Bhushan submitted that he has given an explanation for his statement. Senior Advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Tarun Tejpal, the editor of Tehelka Magazine, submitted that he has apologized
"In view of the explanation/apologies made by the contemnors, we don't deem it necessary to continue matter", the bench recorded in the order.
The case initiated in 2009, which had been lying dormant for a long time, got revived in 2020, when it was posted along with the contempt case taken against Bhushan in 2020 over some of his tweets.
While hearing the case, Bhushan had issued a following statement with regard to his Tehelka interview :
"In my interview to Tehelka in 2009 I have used the word corruption in a wide sense meaning lack of propriety. I did not mean only financial corruption or deriving any pecuniary advantage. If what I have said caused hurt to any of them or to their families in any way, I regret the same. I unreservedly state that I support the institution of the judiciary and especially the Supreme Court of which I am a part, and had no intention to lower the prestige of the judiciary in which I have complete faith. I regret if my interview was misunderstood as doing so, that is, lower the reputation of the judiciary, especially the Supreme Court, which could never have been my intention at all."
The suo moto contempt case was taken on the basis of a complaint made by Senior Advocate Harish Salve who alleged that Bhushan in his interview said that half of the last 16 Chief Justices were corrupt. As per the complaint, Bhushan also said in the interview that he had no proof for the allegations.
The complaint was filed by Salve through an interlocutory application filed in the Sterlite case, in which he was the Amicus Curiae.
On November 6, 2009, the complaint was placed before a bench comprising the then Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justice S H Kapadia, which directed that the matter be listed before a 3-judge bench in which Justice Kapadia was not a member.
On January 19, 2010, a bench comprising Justices Altamas Kabir, Cyriac Joseph and H L Dattu issued notices to Bhushan and Tarun Tejpal, the Editor-in-Chief of Tehelka magazine.